Despite the fact that the Canes have left runners stranded, they have still managed to start 2-0 in region play and scored enough to defeat Coahulla Creek Friday in their 4-1 victory.
“It’s just timely hitting. I think Tuesday we left 12 on. Getting them on is good, but at some point, you have to produce,” Cartersville head coach Stuart Chester said. “We stranded quite a few. That’s baseball, too. It’s a round ball, round bat, sometimes you hit it right at them and just don’t produce. But we’ve got to start getting timely hits.”
Cartersville was able to overcome the lack of timely hitting with strong pitching performances from Elliot Anderson and Micah Smith.
Anderson pitched 4 1/3 innings while allowing just two hits.
However, Coahulla Creek was able to score in the first inning. A leadoff walk by Hayden Lock, a sacrifice bunt from Michael Ward and a single by Levi Wilson allowed Lock to move to third base. He then scored on a Jackson Sheppard groundout.
Anderson was able to shrug off the rough start and keep Coahulla Creek from threatening over the next three innings.
“I don’t think Elliot was on,” Chester said. “It wasn’t the game he had against Parkview, but he threw strikes, struggled with a few pitches, but competed and that kept him in the game.”
Cartersville answered Coahulla Creek’s first-inning score with one of its own when Clifton Dempsey lined a base hit between the first and second basemen for a two-out RBI. The single scored Brent Arnold, who had doubled three batters earlier. Arnold was able to drive a two-strike pitch over the left fielder’s head despite reaching for the pitch and hitting it off the end of the bat.
Arnold went 3 for 3 with a walk in the game after homering against Lakeview Fort-Oglethorpe on Tuesday.
“He’s on fire,” Chester said of Arnold’s game. “He’s going to get in his hacks, but he does a good job of putting the ball in play with two strikes.”
Cartersville was able to take the lead for good in the fourth inning when Elliot Berrey doubled with two outs to start what would become a three-run rally.
The rally was aided when Coahulla Creek pitcher Erick Dominguez lost control of the plate as Mark Quattlebaum and Garrett Rutledge walked to load the bases for Arnold. Despite a mound visit, Dominguez stayed in the game. He proceeded to walk Arnold to score Cartersville’s second run.
Pinch runners Trent Frazier and Quattlebaum would come around to score soon after on a pair of wild pitches by Dominguez.
Cartersville threatened again in the sixth inning, but were unable to score another run.
Smith made the three-run lead stand, anyway, as he pitched 2 1/3 innings to close the game, allowing no runners to reach base besides one error.
Destin Herron, Tuesday’s star on the mound, continued his hot hitting as he had two hits against Coahulla Creek. The Canes displayed a well-balanced offensive performance as each batter in the lineup reached base at least once.
Cartersville is now 4-7 overall and will have a chance to move over .500 with three region games scheduled next week.
“Anytime you’re 2-0 in the region, it’s a good day. We have the game [today against Pepperell at State Mutual Stadium] and then we’ve got three big games next week, so that’ll be the telltale week for us because we have Adairsville, Ringgold and Sonoraville. That’s probably three of the top teams in the region.”
Adairsville 15, Gordon Central 0
Adairsville defeated Gordon Central Friday in one of the most lopsided games the Tigers will see all season.
The game lasted just four innings, but that is as long as it took for Adairsville to pound out 15 hits and capitalize on eight errors by Gordon Central.
Hunter Smith, Colin Bearden and Cody Melton each had three hits in the game. Melton had the lone extra-base hit, a double, which helped account for his game-high four RBIs. Tristin Smith pitched for Adairsville and struck out five, allowing just one hit in four scoreless innings of work.